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Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer says ex-operations chief won't be replaced

SAN FRANCISCO -- Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer called the firing of her second in command, operations chief and former Google executive Henrique De Castro, “regrettable” and said Yahoo would not replace him.

Mayer made the comments during a webcast for Yahoo’s fourth-quarter earnings.

Two weeks ago Yahoo announced that De Castro, who joined Yahoo from Google in 2012, would leave the struggling Internet company with a major payout. Yahoo said Tuesday that its fourth-quarter online display advertising declined 6% year-over-year.

In response to a question from an analyst, Mayer said “ultimately, Henrique was not a fit” for Yahoo.

“It was a conclusion we tried very hard to avoid,” she added.

When another analyst asked for Mayer to comment on De Castro’s performance “personality aside,” Mayer said: “I’d rather not comment on the past and on his performance, but rather on what we’re going to do going forward.”

She said her focus is now to work more closely with the sales team and to create a flatter organization.

De Castro's tenure at Yahoo represented a major "destruction of capital," said BGC Partners analyst Colin Gillis.

He estimates that De Castro earned $2.20 per second while employed at Yahoo.

"And display revenue declined the entire time he was there," Gillis said.

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